De Deus, Gomes Win Close Races in Brazil, Naidich Gets Second Continental Mark

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, April 25. THE competition continued to heat up Thursday at the Maria Lenk long course meet, with swims that put a few more names on the world championship roster.

Leonardo de Deus got things started with a 1:56.85 in the 200 fly, beating out longtime rival and national record holder Kaio Almeida's 1:57.63. Only De Deus dipped under the FINA automatic qualifying standard of 1:57.03, meaning Almeida will miss out on racing the event in Barcelona. Third place went to Luiz Azarias with a 2:00.80.

Joao Gomes posted a lifetime best of 1:00.21 in winning the 100 breaststroke and qualifying for his second long course world championships, his first since 2009. The 1:00 barrier in the 100 breaststroke continues to elude Felipe Lima, who has a lifetime best of 1:00.08. Tonight in Rio, he placed second in the 100 breast with a 1:00.23, but will have the opportunity to blast through that barrier in Barcelona. National record holder Henrique Barbosa finished third with a 1:01.99. Felipe Silva had been expected to contend for the title, but he was relegated to the B final after placing ninth in prelims. He won the B final with a 1:03.31.

Daniel Orzechowski made two runs at his national record of 24.44 in the 50 backstroke, winning the final with a 24.70 after posting a 24.68 in prelims. Joining Orzechowski in the event at the world championships will be Guilherme Guido, who placed second with a 24.83. Fabio Santi took third with a 25.36.

Martin Naidich of Argentina posted a South American record in the first heat of the men's 800 freestyle timed final event with a 7:57.60, breaking Luiz Arapiraca's mark of 7:58.20. The swim was the fastest of the day, with countryman Juan Pereyra placing second with a 7:59.47. Marcos de Oliveira finished third with an 8:02.35.

On the women's side, Etiene Medeiros added the 50 back to her world championships lineup, breaking the meet record with a 27.88. The time, however, missed Fabiola Molina's national record of 27.70. Natalia Diniz finished in second place with a 29.11 and Natalia de Luccas was third with a 29.21.

Joanna Maranhao chased her national mark of 2:09.41 in the 200 fly, but fell short with a 2:10.27. She also missed out on automatic qualification for worlds, short of the 2:09.38 standard. Maranhao essentially swam alone for the race, with Julia Gerotto second with a 2:15.61 and Samantha Salinas third with a 2:16.10.

Beatriz Travalon won the women's 100 breast with a 1:09.32, missing the world championship qualifying time of 1:08.63. Second place went to Cecilia Zaccarelli with a 1:10.87 and Julia Sebastian was third with a 1:10.94.